Strong interest in Southam ‘live and work’ units

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An innovative scheme for small enterprises which allows owners to live above their premises has taken off in Southam.

Nine ‘live and work’ units for budding stay-at-home entrepreneurs have been built on the £8million Insight Park development on Welsh Road East by local building company Tompkins Construction.

They are the first ‘live and work’ units in the area, an idea borrowed from retro-build schemes in other parts of the country. Two of the nine have already been built and another five will be completed early in the new year.

Three of the units on the commercial/residential part of the park have already been sold and there is strong interest in the others, said Scott Blake, a director of Leamington-based commercial property consultants ehB Commercial, which is handling the sale.

“The units are very attractive because they start at £140,000 for the shell and the buyer can configure it to their specification and work life balance. It would be difficult to get a residential property in the area offering so much at that price,” said Mr Blake.

“It certainly has the potential for individuals looking at a lifestyle change. It could be a one-man-band potter who wants a workshop or an accountant employing a small staff. It could even be an office with a member of staff living there They are extremely flexible developments. It is green and there are potential tax benefits as the work space bills can be claimed against the business.”

Dave Tompkins, director of Tompkins Construction, said that Stratford District Council were very supportive of the enterprising idea because it encouraged entrepreneurs who wanted to work from home and avoid the grind of a daily commute. He said the whole Insight Park project – on the site of a former garden centre in Southam - had been a great success. All 21 units on the development have now been sold or let.

Pictured: EhB director Scott Blake (left) with Dave Tompkins